ch_01 - Chapter 1 Role of Financial Markets and...

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Chapter 1 Role of Financial Markets and Institutions Questions 1. Explain the meaning of surplus units and deficit units. Provide an example of each. ANSWER: Surplus units provide funds to the financial markets while deficit units obtain funds from the financial markets. Surplus units include households with savings, while deficit units include firms or government agencies that borrow funds. 2. Distinguish between primary and secondary markets. ANSWER: Primary markets are used for the issuance of new securities while secondary markets are used for the trading of existing securities. 3. Distinguish between money and capital markets. ANSWER: Money markets facilitate the trading of short-term (money market) instruments while capital markets facilitate the trading of long-term (capital market) instruments. 4. Distinguish between perfect and imperfect security markets. ANSWER: With perfect financial markets, all information about any securities for sale would be freely available to investors, information about surplus and deficit units would be freely available, and all securities could be unbundled into any size desired. In reality, markets are imperfect, so that surplus and deficit units do not have free access to information, and securities can not be unbundled as desired. 5. Explain why the existence of imperfect markets creates a need for financial institutions. ANSWER: Financial intermediaries are needed to facilitate the exchange of funds between surplus and deficit units. They have the information to provide this service and can even repackage deposits to provide the amount of funds borrowers desire. 6. Explain the meaning of efficient markets. Why might we expect markets to be efficient most of the time? ANSWER: If markets are efficient then prices of securities available in these markets properly reflect all information. We should expect markets to be efficient because if they weren't, investors would capitalize on the discrepancy between what prices are and what they should be. This action would force market prices to represent the appropriate prices as perceived by the market. 7. In recent years, several securities firms have been guilty of using inside information when purchasing securities, thereby achieving returns well above the norm (even when accounting for risk). Does this suggest that the security markets are not efficient? Explain.
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ch_01 - Chapter 1 Role of Financial Markets and...

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